Abbys Angels Ocicats

Beautiful babies from my home to yours.

 

The Cat Fancier's Association, Inc.

the CFA Ocicat Breed Council website

Bringing you the history of the Ocicat.

News flash!The Ocicat "arrives"!

In 1964 the original Ocicat was the unexpected result of an experimental breeding which attempted to produce an Aby-pointed Siamese. Virginia Daly, noted CFA breeder living in Michigan, knew the possibility of getting the sought after Aby-point and was willing to invest the time she knew it would take to breed the two generations that were necessary. But the ivory kitten with golden spots was a surprise! Mrs. Daly's daughter named the breed the Ocicat, because of its resemblance to the ocelot. Tonga, the first Ocicat was neutered and sold as a pet. When the Detroit newspaper publicized the lovely spotted cat and noted geneticist, Dr. Clyde Keeler, expressed his desire to see a  domestic cat which would mimic some of the vanishing wild species, the breeding was repeated to produce more Ocicats. Other breeders followed Mrs. Daly's recipe to develop other Ocicat lines with a broad genetic base.

The Ocicat was recognized for CFA registration in 1966, but issues in Mrs. Daly's personal life meant it took another twenty years to develop the breed and gain the support for provisional status. The Ocicat was advanced to championship status May 1987. Since then, several have achieved National and Regional wins, or Grand Championship status, and many morehave gained championships. They can now be seen at most shows, and a few Ocicats have been exported to other countries where their popularity and numbers are increasing dramatically.

Originally, there was tremendous controversy about the genetics of inheritance associated with the spotted pattern. In the earlier days of the cat fancy, when life was simpler, all patterned cats were believed to display one of the three tabby patterns: ticked (Aby), mackerel (tiger striped), or classic (blotched or bull's eye).It was thought then that spotting had occured as a separate pattern. However, further investigation has revealed that spotting is simply a modifier of the underlying pattern. In the case of the Ocicat, that underlying pattern is that of a classic tabby. Mackerel tabbies were eliminated from the breed early on, as they did not produce the desired spot size (the mackerel tabby has narrow striping). The spotted pattern of the Ocicat, at least on the better examples of the breed, is consequently notedly different from other spotted breeds or varieties. It is more dramatic, and generally shows off the bullseye found in the classic pattern. Selective breeding has moved this pattern forward to create a cat with lovely pattern and dramatic color.

Ocicats come in many colors, all those colors associated with the two foundation breeds: tawny (ruddy), chocolate, cinnamon, blue, lavender, fawn, plus silver, ebony silver, chocolate silver, cinnamon silver, blue silver, lavender silver, and fawn silver from the American Shorthair.

Many thanks to Barb Stewart, Auxarcs Ocicats for her significant contribution to this history of the Ocicat.

Copyright 1998-2008 by the CFA Ocicat Breed Council Please do not use photographs from this site.

October 12, 2008